Fryer designed to handle trans fat free oils

By Ahmed ElAmin

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Fat

A new poultry fryer designed to handle more volatile and unstable
oils meets a demand frompoultry processors who are switching from
using trans fats.

FMC FoodTec said its new TFF-IV Fryer addresses the trend towards using non trans fat oils. Trans fats, which are mainly found in partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, is a commoningredient in thousands of food products due to their ease of use. However scientific studies have linked such fats to raised blood cholesterol levels andto an increase in risk to heart disease.

As a result industry has been under pressure from retailers, consumergroups and regulators to eliminate trans fats from processed foods.The alternatives are moredifficult to handle in commercial food processing situations and hence require adjustments toexisting equipment.

FMC FoodTech's new fryer combines the company's Thermofin heat exchanger technology with its MX-series centrifugalfiltration system.

The Thermofin heat exchanger is designed to prevent sediment from sticking due to the electro-polished fin constructionwhile the filtration system is built to filter out suspended flour particles as small as 5 microns (µm).

The TFF's heat-transfer system helps keep the build-up of free fatty acids to a minimum, which if left to accumulate can hasten deterioration, requiring the oil to be thrownout, FMC FoodTec claimed in announcing the new machine. A reduction in the height of the heatexchanger results in aneight per cent decrease in oil use throughout the entire system, FMC FoodTec claimed.

Since the system also maintains the same frying capacity and short oil turnover rates, thedecrease results in cost savings of about $42,000 annually, the company claimed.

Meanwhile the MX centrifugal filtration system is designed to filter out suspended flour particles as tinyas five microns. A second filtration system - the sediment conveyor belt - runs opposite the product path, filtering out particles at the infeed so theydo not travel through the fryer and burn, causing further deterioration and off-flavors.

The system also reduces the amount of oil absorbed by the filtered sediment by 50 per cent for even greatersavings, said Elizabeth Monasterio, FMC FoodTech's product line manager of coating, frying and filtration.

"Producers can use the TFF-IV fryer to manage their oil usage so effectively that none of the oil needs to be thrown away,"​she stated. "The savings in oil costs enable producers to recoup their investment within 10 to 18 months. In the end, processors experience less sediment, less rancidity, lower levels of free fatty acids and better oil color and flavor which makes for high-quality and great tasting products."

TFF-IV has dual exhaust vents in the hood - one at the infeed and one at the discharge. The redesign creates a uniform steam blanket over the top of the cooking oil, reducing oxidation and providing a measure of insulation from the surroundingair, FMC claimed.

The design results in a temperature-equalizing effect along the length of the fryer. The smaller diameter exhaust fan size alsocuts down on the amount of oil being pulled out of the fryer, the company stated.

Other improvements to FMC FoodTech's previous line of fryers include all-stainless steel exposed motors, external adjustments for the top submerger and the Teflon slat belt, and an electrically driven lift system.FMC said it also improved the design of the expansion joints on the fryer hood, allowing easiercleaning.

The topic of trans fats has been front-page news over the past two years as food companies such as Frito Lay, Wendy's,Kentucky Fried Chicken, and most recently, McDonald's - bow to public pressure to use frying oil alternatives with zero trans fat for healthier options.In the US, New Yorkhas banned restaurants from using trans fats, and other cities plan tofollow the example.

In the UK, an estimated £1.5bn worth of food products have been reformulated to eliminate harmful trans fats,according to the Food and Drink Federation (FDF). The brands involved include Hula Hoops, Mars Bars, Nestle Cheerios and Weetabix.

The topic of trans fats has been front-page news over the past year as food companies such as Frito Lay, Wendy's, KFC, and most recently, McDonald's - bow to public pressure to use frying oil alternatives with zero trans fat for healthier options.

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